President Goodluck Jonathan on Monday said the Federal Government would develop deep sea ports to check congestion at the existing sea ports.
Jonathan stated this in Lagos at the opening of a three-day 2014 Nigeria Maritime Expo (NIMAREX) with the theme:”100 years of Maritime Development in Nigeria’’ .
Jonathan said that developing deep sea ports was the only way to solve the problems associated with port congestion and sustain the ongoing implementation of 24-hour ports operation.
He said that the Federal Executive Council had approved the development of the Lekki deep sea port in Lagos to handle bigger vessels and create employment under the Public-Private-Partnership arrangement.
The president, who was represented by the Minister of Transport, Sen. Idris Umar, also said that the steering and project delivery committee had submitted a draft report on the Ibaka deep sea port in Akwa Ibom.
He said that discussion was ongoing among the Federal Ministry of Transport, Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), Lagos State Government and some investors on the development of Badagry deep sea port.
He said that similar arrangement was also being made with the Ogun, Bayelsa and Ondo State governments to develop the Olokola deep sea port and Agge deep sea port, respectively.
The Chairman of NIMAREX, Mrs Margaret Onyema-Orakwusi, said that the focus of the expo was to harness the country’s abundant maritime resources.
Onyema-Orakwusi said that Nigeria would “take over the world” if the country’s marine resources and mineral wealth were properly harnessed.
“For us to take on the world, Nigeria must develop her shipping industry to aggregate the facets of her economic niche within the comity of nations,’’ she said. (NAN)